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DeKalb schools chief: Extend school calendar to make up snow days


DeKalb County Superintendent Michael Thurmond is recommending an extended school calendar to make up the instructional days students lost to recent winter weather.


“Our primary responsibility is to help students improve, achieve and grow,” Thurmond said. “The revisions proposed to the DeKalb Board of Education will maximize instruction time for our students prior to the administration of the Criterion Reference Competency Tests (CRCT) and the End of Course Tests (EOCT).”


DeKalb County lost eight instructional days due to snow, sleet and ice storms in January and February 2014.  The Georgia Board of Education voted recently to allow local school systems to decide whether to waive up to seven days lost to inclement weather.


Thurmond said he will recommend the following schedule changes at the March 3 School Board meeting:

·               Add five instruction days prior to the CRCT for students in grades 3-8 by moving the testing dates from April 15-24 to April 22-May 1.

·               Add three instructional and remediation days to the end of the school year - May 21-23

·               Move the CRCT re-test window to May 20-22 to recoup remediation days prior to the CRCT re-assessment

·               The original schedule for the EOCT testing is unchanged for May 5-12 for students in grades 9-12


In addition to the calendar revisions, the district will provide enhanced support and resources designed to improve academic growth and achievement for teachers, students and administrators. Teachers will receive in-service professional learning including Saturday sessions, on March 15.  Also, workshops for parents and families to support and strengthen home-school learning will be scheduled.

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